In 2018, Customer Match feature will celebrate a 3-year anniversary. Since it's introduction, Google has made sure that its strength and use get better with every update. Customer Match allows you to upload lists of customers or other proprietary lists into AdWords to target search or display ads to these users. You can also choose to exclude this audience. One thing is for sure, if you're using Customer Match, you're trying to laser-target your ads. And that's when Google's newest addition can be even more helpful.
From now on, advertisers can upload phone numbers and mailing addresses to create audiences for advanced targeting.
Just like with email data, Google tries to match phone numbers and mailing addresses with user data in its accounts. This way, hashed email addresses and phone number are matched up with Google's own hashed strings. All of the matches are then added to Customer Match lists.
Hash is a cryptographic function that is common for its security features. It turns pieces of data (like an email address) and transforms it into a 32-character hexadecimal string. This means that everytime you run the same piece of data through the hashing algorithm, the results are the same data. Hash has become extremely important in marketing as it works across every marketing channel.
It's Google's priority to add advanced features to marketer's toolbox. Matching phone numbers are great but we bet that Google has some more features up their sleeve.
On the other hand, it will be very interesting to see how will Google battle GDPR with upcoming updates and how will this affect the advanced AdWords strategies. Will Europe have a different set of strategies than the rest of the world?
Google has always been very innovative about its features and with GDPR, it will be exciting to see what approach they take.